Columbus’ Shrinking Annexation

Ever wonder how Columbus got so big in area? Its city limits stretch into parts of other counties and include about a third of Franklin County. Today, it has a reputation for annexing its way to growth, but how true is this?

Well, 50 years ago, it was more or less true. Today, not so much. Aggressive annexation began in Columbus in 1953, when Mayor Maynard “Jack” Sensenbrenner began his policy of requiring annexation into the city if communities wanted city water service. Between 1953 and 1960, the area size of the city more than doubled, and that rate continued through the 1960s and 1970s, even after Sensenbrenner was no longer mayor. After 1980, annexation rates gradually began to decline.

As the chart above shows, you can see the rapid rate of growth during the 1950s-1970s and the decline in more recent decades. Through the first 5 years of the 2010s, Columbus is on pace to add fewer than 3 square miles by 2020. Despite that fact, the city’s annual population growth since 2010 is exceeding the average annual growth of any decade during the mass annexation years. This strongly supports that the dynamic, and indeed, the story of Columbus’ growth is no longer about “fake” growth through the addition of existing land and population, but rather though the influx of new residents from outside of the city limits altogether. This is helping to gradually raise the city’s population density, which exceeded Cincinnati’s last year, as the chart below shows, along with a few other Columbus peers.

2014 City Population Estimates

The Census has released new estimates for July 1, 2013-July 1, 2014 for all 100 incorporated places of the metro area.

Total Population July 1, 2014
1. Columbus: 835,957
2. Newark (Licking): 47,839
3. Dublin: 44,214
4. Lancaster (Fairfield): 39,595
5. Grove City: 38,519
6. Westerville: 37,667
7. Delaware (Delaware): 37,372
8. Reynoldsburg: 36,711
9. Upper Arlington: 34,609
10. Gahanna: 34,257
11. Hilliard: 32,465
12. Marysville (Union): 22,708
13. Pickerington (Fairfield): 19,408
14. Whitehall: 18,558
15. Pataskala (Licking): 15,192
16. Worthington: 14,384
17. Bexley: 13,517
18. Circleville (Pickaway): 13,455
19. Powell (Delaware): 12,511
20. Heath (Licking): 10,456
21. London (Madison): 10,056
22. New Albany: 9,202
23. Canal Winchester: 7,704
24. Grandview Heights: 7,244
25. Logan (Hocking): 7,154
26. Granville (Licking): 5,723
27. Groveport: 5,672
28. Sunbury (Delaware): 4,909
29. Johnstown (Licking): 4,870
30. New Lexington (Perry): 4,717
31. Obetz: 4,706
32. Plain City (Madison): 4,295
33. West Jefferson (Madison): 4,272
34. Ashville (Pickaway): 4,149
35. Mount Gilead (Morrow): 3,662
36. Baltimore (Fairfield): 2,962
37. Buckeye Lake (Licking): 2,737
38. Crooksville (Perry): 2,493
39. Hebron (Licking): 2,386
40. Richwood (Union): 2,251
41. Utica (Licking): 2,176
42. Cardington (Morrow): 2,054
43. South Bloomfield (Pickaway): 1,812
44. Mount Sterling (Madison): 1,748
45. Commercial Point (Pickaway): 1,599
46. Somerset (Perry): 1,461
47. Bremen (Fairfield): 1,436
48. Ashley (Delaware): 1,354
49. Minerva Park: 1,306
50. Lithopolis (Fairfield): 1,290
51. Hanover (Licking): 1,103
52. Millersport (Fairfield): 1,048
53. Williamsport (Pickaway): 1,043
54. Urbancrest: 1,011
55. Thornville (Perry): 992
56. Pleasantville (Fairfield): 958
57. New Holland (Pickaway): 832
58. Milford Center (Union): 813
59. Junction City (Perry): 809
60. Amanda (Fairfield): 748
61. Shawnee Hills (Delaware): 729
62. New Straitsville (Perry): 713
63. Galena (Delaware): 684
64. Ostrander (Delaware): 674
65. Shawnee (Perry): 645
66. Valleyview: 630
67. Thurston (Fairfield): 609
68. Marble Cliff: 581
69. Corning (Perry): 573
70. Riverlea: 564
71. Stoutsville (Fairfield): 564
72. Kirkersville (Licking): 536
73. Carroll (Fairfield): 521
74. Laurelville (Hocking): 521
75. Alexandria (Licking): 518
76. Murray City (Hocking): 440
77. Edison (Morrow): 438
78. Sugar Grove (Fairfield): 429
79. Hartford (Licking): 400
80. St. Louisville (Licking): 374
81. South Solon (Madison): 361
82. Marengo (Morrow): 346
83. Harrisburg: 331
84. Midway (Madison): 327
85. Rushville (Fairfield): 304
86. Orient (Pickaway): 275
87. Magnetic Springs (Union): 273
88. Fulton (Morrow): 261
89. Lockbourne: 245
90. Unionville Center (Union): 236
91. Chesterville (Morrow): 231
92. Tarlton (Pickaway): 288
93. Darbyville (Pickaway): 226
94. Gratiot (Licking): 223
95. Glenford (Perry): 176
96. Sparta (Morrow): 163
97. Hemlock (Perry): 155
98. West Rushville (Fairfield): 135
99. Brice: 120
100. Rendville (Perry): 36

Total Change July 1st 2013-July 1, 2014 and Census 2010-July 1, 2014 in ()

1. Columbus: +12,241 (+48,924)
2. Hilliard: +1,458 (+4,030)
3. Grove City: +1,000 (+2,944)
4. Delaware: +764 (+2,619)
5. Dublin: +585 (+2,463)
6. Worthington: +522(+809)
7. New Albany: +373 (+1,478)
8. Pickerington: +356 (+1,117)
9. Powell: +279 (+1,011)
10. Lancaster: +279 (+815)
11. Grandview Heights: +273 (+708)
12. Marysville: +262 (+614)
13. Gahanna: +190 (+1,009)
14. Reynoldsburg: +186 (+818)
15. Sunbury: +179 (+520)
16. Canal Winchester: +162 (+603)
17. Upper Arlington: +141 (+838)
18. Westeville: +115 (+1,547)
19. London: +90 (+152)
20. Circleville: +84 (+141)
21. Lithopolis: +68 (+184)
22. Newark: +65 (+266)
23. Plain City: +51 (+70)
24. Whitehall: +48 (+496)
25. Bexley: +46 (+460)
26. Logan: +42 (+2)
27. Johnstown: +41 (+238)
28. Hanover: +41 (+182)
29. West Jefferson: +41 (+50)
30. Groveport: +34 (+309)
31. Ashville: +31 (+52)
32. Pataskala: +26 (+230)
33. South Bloomfield: +26 (+68)
34. Urbancrest: +26 (+51)
35. Obetz: +25 (+174)
36. Hebron: +20 (+50)
37. Buckeye Lake: +19 (-9)
38. Utica: +17 (+44)
39. Mount Sterling: +17 (-34)
40. Heath: +16 (+146)
41. Galena: +15 (+31)
42. Ostrander: +15 (+31)
43. Commercial Point: +11 (+17)
44. Richwood: +9 (+22)
45. Williamsport: +9 (+20)
46. Baltimore: +8 (-4)
47. Cardington: +7 (+7)
48. Amanda: +6 (+11)
49. Millersport: +5 (+4)
50. New Holland: +4 (+31)
51. Milford Center: +4 (+21)
52. Bremen: +4 (+11)
53. Kirkersville: +4 (+11)
54. South Solon: +4 (+6)
55. Alexandria: +4 (+1)
56. Shawnee Hills: +3 (+48)
57. Minverva Park: +3 (+34)
58. Riverlea: +3 (+19)
59. Marble Cliff: +3 (+8)
60. Tarlton: +3 (+6)
61. Midway: +3 (+5)
62. Thurston: +3 (+5)
63. Ashley: +2 (+24)
64. Harrisburg: +2 (+11)
65. Magnetic Springs: +2 (+5)
66. Orient: +2 (+5)
67. Darbyville: +2 (+4)
68. Stoutsville: +2 (+4)
69. Sugar Grove: +2 (+3)
70. Pleasantville: +2 (-2)
71. Lockbourne: +1 (+8)
72. Brice: +1 (+6)
73. Marengo: +1 (+4)
74. Chesterville: +1 (+3)
75. Fulton: +1 (+3)
76. Hartford: +1 (+3)
77. Unionville Center: +1 (+3)
78. Gratiot: +1 (+2)
79. Mount Gilead: +1 (+2)
80. Rushville: +1 (+2)
81. St. Louisville: +1 (+1)
82. West Rushville: +1 (+1)
83. Laurelville: +1 (-6)
84. Valleyview: 0 (+10)
85. Glenford: 0 (+3)
86. Sparta: 0 (+2)
87. Thornville: 0 (+1)
88. Hemlock: 0 (0)
89. Rendville: 0 (0)
90. Carroll: 0 (-3)
91. Murray City: 0 (-9)
92. Edison: -1 (+1)
93. Granville: -2 (+77)
94. Corning: -3 (-10)
95. New Straitsville: -3 (-9)
96. Junction City: -4 (-10)
97. Shawnee: -4 (-10)
98. Somerset: -7 (-20)
99. Crooksville: -14 (-41)
100. New Lexington: -24 (-14)

Places growing 2013-2014: 83 of 100 or 83%.
Places growing 2010-2014: 84 of 100 or 84%.

Places that grew 2000-2010: 70 of 100 or 70%.

Columbus Slowly Becoming Ohio’s Largest Job Market- In One Graph

The Columbus metro has long been Ohio’s 3rd largest labor market, but that seems to be changing over time.

The January 2015 labor force jumped to a record high, and if trends hold, may pass the other 2 Cs by the end of the year.